Twenty years ago this movie would have won, hands down. I liked “The Artist” but it didn’t compare to " War Horse,” in my opinion. This was the best movie I have seen in a long time. It is an old fashioned epic movie with family sentiments and characters you love. Albert is the young man in rural England who trains the exquisite horse, he names Joey. A bond develops that reminded me of “The Black Stallion,” boy-horse relationship. That movie is a favorite of mine. Both of these movies have their silent elements where the boy-horse attraction unfolds without words, but your heart soars as you watch.
The father’s extravagant purchase of the horse puts the family in financial peril that forces the father to sell the horse to a military officer to be used in the beginning battles of WWI. The horse moves through the war changing and inspiring the lives of all who experience time with this amazing horse—British Cavalry, German Soldiers and a French farmer and his granddaughter. I liked that they portrayed the German soldiers as men with human empathy.
There are magical elements to the story, which bespeaks the hand of Providence. Someone told me that it was sad and I dreaded the ending thinking that was the sadness. But it isn’t sad. It is joyful, relationship affirming, as the characters move through their trials loving and supporting each other. This is a movie I will want to own. I wanted to stand up and cheer at the end. Anyone 8 years and older would enjoy this movie. 4 stars